Thoughts From The Publisher’s Desk

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It was a surprise to just about everyone this week that the Route 90 bridge reopened ahead of schedule. However, according to those who know about this sort of thing, it was not a huge bombshell that the work was done three weeks ahead of the estimated completion date. Sources say the contract to replace the 85-foot section of the span’s surface was likely laden with some appealing incentive clauses for early completion. The proverbial carrot at the end of the stick served as a bit of extra motivation, according to some. Official comments pointed to contractors working around the clock and the timely decisions on specific work aspects as the reasons for the early completion. Either way, it’s good news for just about everyone that the project is a thing of the past, and the timing could not have come at a better time for the holiday weekend.

Apparently, there’s still a market for hot beef. That’s the word from Berlin this week as two men peddling black market steaks out of their vehicle were arrested in the western part of the town for selling meats without the county health department’s permission and sans the appropriate license.

A couple years ago, a guy approached me at my house in Berlin with some frozen steaks under his arm. I found it incredibly suspicious and began asking him questions about where the beef came from and how he got a hold of it. The more questions I fired at him the cheaper the price got. As he kept his head on a swivel, presumably looking out for authorities and for his buddy nearby in a vehicle, he gave me some contrived line about a family friend had a big score and how he was simply trying to put earn some money for his family. He eventually realized I had no intention of buying anything and ran away, looking for another sale.

One of the men caught this week peddling the beef turned out to be wanted on the shore for second-degree assault and destruction of property. As if the health concerns were not enough of a motivation, let this story serve as a reminder to never purchase meat from a guy selling it on the streets.

There are a number of bad roads in Berlin desperate for serious improvements. Cash flow has limited what the town can do over the years, but progress is currently being seen throughout town, particularly on Graham Ave. off Old Ocean City Blvd. where construction folks continue to work on all new sidewalks and laying a new surface. It was learned at this week’s meeting at Town Hall that Harrison Ave. would soon be getting an overhaul as well. Residents around Berlin are well aware of this road’s problems, as it’s arguably the worst around. It has long been talked about but it has routinely been pushed to the bottom of the priority list for a number of reasons. It was revealed this week that about $10,000 has been allocated to the road for a short-term paving job. It’s going to be a significant improvement over the status quo, but it will not be the major overhaul needed, according to the town. Regardless, it’s welcome news for those who use the road and realize how bad it’s been for too long.

Today is Black Friday, and I know it can be a little crazy out there in the shopping world. However, I had no idea it was to this point. AAA Mid-Atlantic issued a press release this week headlined, “Tips For Navigating Parking Lots On Black Friday.” Out of curiosity, I had to read on. The release went on to offer the following tips:

– Head for the side door

– Play the outfield

– See and be seen

– Beware of tall vehicles

– Refrain from reverse

– Look out for little ones

– Stay on track and alert

– Thieves like to window shop

– Stay on guard in parking lots

– Slow down, buckle up

– Wait until Cyber Monday

After reading this release, I realized free time does not appear to be a problem for our friends at the regional bureau of AAA.

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